Seeing the Potential {recipe}

Everyone is different, ergo, we each bring something unique to a relationship, be it a platonic, romantic or work relationship.  I am calm, patient and passionate.  Doug is strategic, factual and artistic.  We joke often about the "ying and the yang." I tend to see things for what they are; he sees the potential. The other day, he opened the pantry and stated that there was nothing to eat. I, on the other hand, was the one who saw the potential in a pantry full of raw supplies and ingredients.  Doug was right, in that there was nothing prepared, waiting for consumption, but it was I who saw the many possabilities the pantry had to offer!

I revisited a cookbook that I hadn't picked up in a while, called The Kind Diet by: Alicia Silverstone.  The "Clueless" girl penned a book in 2009 about her decision to eat vegan, but primarily, the book is full of great, healthy recipes. And yes, they are all vegan.

I had been vegan/vegetarian (When I cooked, I ate vegan, but would eat dairy when eating away from my home) for years, and picked up the book at that time.   I like the way she writes, not at all formal, and her recipes are delicious.  While some ingredients require a trip to Whole Foods or another health food outlet, she eliminates processed sugar, dairy and meat in a way that makes the consumer not miss them one bit!

After rooting through the book, I found a recipe that I had not yet made, but had all of the ingredients to pull off.  As a side note, I have to say that it is such a sense of accomplishment when I pull a recipe and notice that all of the necessities are stocked away in my kitchen.  Odd? Maybe.  But I've noticed how my cooking and kitchen skills have evolved over the years, and this is one example of how far I've come.  I used to take the cookbook to the grocery store with me, spread it out in the grocery cart and shop for what was needed.  Oh, the times they are a changin'!

The recipe I went with was "Mom's Granola." It took 30 minutes, most of which was hands-off and is perfect for breakfast, as a snack or on top of a dessert.  It makes 2 quarts, but I promise you, it will disappear quickly!

Ingredients:

  • 6 cups quick-cooking oats
  • 1/2 cup maple sugar
  • 3/4 cup wheat germ
  • 1/2 cup shredded coconut (I used raw, unsweetened)
  • 1/2 cup sesame or sunflower seeds (I omitted the seeds)
  • 1 cup chopped nuts or raisins (I did 1/2 cup raw almonds, chopped and 1/2 cup raisins)
  • 1/2 cup safflower oil
  • 1/3 cup maple syrup or brown rice syrup (I used maple)
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

Directions:

  1. Pre-heat the oven to 350 degrees F
  2. Spread the oats on a rimmed baking pan and bake for 10 minutes.
  3. Transfer the oats to a large mixing bowl and add the sugar, wheat germ, coconut, seeds and nuts/raisins.
  4. Stir to mix well.  Then, add the oil, syrup and vanilla extract.  Mix until everything is moistened.
  5. Spread half the mixture on each of 2 rimmed baking sheets (Or back in 2 batches) and bake for 10 minutes.  Stir after 5 minutes to brown evenly.
  6. Let the baked granola cool on the pans, then transfer to a bowl and stir until crumbly.  Store in an airtight container.
  7. Enjoy!